Spring green apple muffins

I feel awful when I waste food…good, organic, good-for-me food.  And so I do whatever I can to NOT let goodness go bad.

I had a bunch of pasture raised eggs and 6 imperfect granny smith apples that needed to get gone, so they mixed together to make a yummy treat for me and my pups Rocky the Rescue and Contessa Bear Smith!  Yes… win-win for all!

I wasn’t sure how it would turn out because sweeter, not tart, apples are typically used for baked breads and cakes, but I figured if the green goodies can go into pie, then why not a muffin?!  Besides, it sounded fresh for Spring! Experiment challenge taken!

INGREDIENTS:

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Simple ingredients; easy recipe to try!

1 cup coconut flour

1 tablespoon Ceylon cinnamon

2 teaspoons of each baking powder and baking soda

1/2 teaspoon Himalayan pink salt

2 cups applesauce (or 5 average size apples pureed with juice squeezed from 1/2 lemon and 6 dates–fresh, homemade is always better!)

8 pasture-raised eggs

1/2 cup coconut oil melted

2 teaspoons each local or favorite honey and vanilla paste

WHAT TO DO:

 

=Heat oven to 350 degrees.

=Add all wet ingredients (applesauce, coconut oil, eggs, honey, and vanilla paste) and mix by hand or mixer machine.

=Sift together dry ingredients and combine with wet and mix thoroughly.

=Scoop into silicone muffin molds or paper-lined muffin tins.  These do not rise too much, so filling almost to top is fine.

=Bake for 20-25 minutes… I ended up going close to 25 minutes.

wp-1491358673612.jpg=Optional: save a scoop of batter, add date paste of 5 Medjool dates, and 1/4 up of GF oats and mash together.  Take a little bit and mix this mash onto the top of each muffin batter in the tins or mold.  This will bake for at least 25 minutes.  It’s just a little bit sweeter and has a nice touch of texture that delights.

=BONUS!  This was baked with our best pup pals in mind!  My two rescues licked their plates clean… If your pup likes apples, this will be a great treat to enjoy together!

=FOOD TRIVIA: Did you know that various sources say it takes anywhere from 55 to 120 gallons to produce one egg?  I imagine the wide range is for the allowances from conventional to biodynamic farming… and everything in between.

Nevertheless, it’s best to eat up what you get and avoid wasting food and resources it takes to produce that food…for the love of people and our planet!  

AND LOOK WHAT YUMMY GOODNESS THAT FIGHTING FOOD WASTE INSPIRED! 🙂

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A MAGNIFICENT PAIRING

THIS IS THE SWEET STORY OF HOW TO MAKE A WINNING TREAT FOR JUST ABOUT ANYBODY! Lots of variation in this one… take my suggestions and run with your ideas! The fundamental steps are the same, so this is what I like to call YUM-FUN!

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So, about once a year.. when my husband has his annual rum and cigar birthdate outing with pals, I get inspired to concoct a one-bite dessert pairing that represents us as a couple… (i.e. what would we be if we were a pair of desserts?)  I know.  I’m weird.  Nevertheless, I am happy with the outcome. Call me super strange, but having both one-bites’ flavors mix on my palate really hit me with a deep, sensory and arguably spiritual revelation! 

Introducing a Magical Pair:  

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Peanut-y Rum Cup with Raspberry Crunch on top and

a Raw “Caramel” Almond, Date, and Fig Cup Crowned with Coconut.

Through this pairing, I have tasted what it is like to appreciate individual merits, but have a melding union be even more deliciously delightful than just one offering alone!  And is that not the mysterious, glorious one-ness a marriage is idealized to be?  Ah, the beauty of food and the enlightenment possible therein…  Try this. Seriously.  

A brief explanation: Jon enjoys rum, peanut butter, and raspberries…and I like everything in both items but prefer a healthier version of all treats. ta-DA!

HOW TO: the peanut-y cup was easy… wpid-20150427_184250.jpg

Just double boil semi-sweet chocolate along with a bit of coconut oil and rum extract (or the real thing), layer the ooey gooey smooth melted chocolate on the bottom of your mini paper cup liners, follow with a dollop of peanut better, and add more rum infused chocolate on top. Sprinkle with Himalayan salt and add a piece of freeze dried raspberry before putting in fridge to set for 10 minutes.  Easy and delish!  There is refined sugar in the store bought chocolate chips, which is the downer… which brings up the dessert version of “me” for Jon’s birthdate party favors.  A bit more complex, but less guilt later when you eat them…! LOL

INGREDIENTS:

Crust: 1 cup soaked and dehydrated almonds, 1/2 cup shredded coconut, 1/2 black mission figs, 3/4 cup medjool dates

“Caramel” middle : Halawi dates soaked in just enough water to soften, vanilla bean extract, cinnamon dash and sea salt.

Carob topping: melted Tablespoon of coconut oil, another couple Tablespoons of coconut manna, 1/4 cup of raw carob powder, 1 Tablespoon of yacon powder (or syrup would be better). mesquite is also a great option.

HOW TO:

Food process almonds until broken into large crumbles, not into a paste, add the dates and figs… and coconut shreds until it sticks together to mold into the bottom or your cup liners and muffin molds.  Your thumbs will be great to hollow out the middle in which you will put a dollop of the date paste “caramel” mixture.

 

To make the “caramel,” just food process all the listed ingredients until smooth.  Put this smooth paste in the cup.  Finally, melt the coconut oil and manna in a double boiler and whisk in carob powder and yacon–use maple syrup if you want a bit more sweet.  Drizzle over “caramel” dollop and smooth in down to be in line with the top of the crust.  Finally, cover the liquidy parts of the toppings with enough coconut shreds to cover.  Chill to set in fridge.  Enjoy!!!! …more work, but definitely less guilt involved since there’s nothing refined in the way of sweeteners in this option!

 

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Option using silicone cups…great to at home party purposes! This is messy yum-fun!

One more major bonus for the raw cup dessert  (the one I am describing WITHOUT chocolate… my doggie Rocky the Rescue can have a smidge, too!!! wahoo… and he enjoyed a few bits of a one-bite. 🙂  Truly guilt-free me!

 

 

So, this was a foodie’s way of helping you get to know me and my hubby as a pair… You can choose one or the other, but the magic of this pairing is that having both together makes the flavors even better!!! Truly!!!  I am super blessed at how this worked out!!!

Here are other varieties of this pictured below:

An Artful Fast…

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“To eat is a necessity, but to eat intelligently is an art.”

― François de La Rochefoucauld

This is worth saying again… dwelling upon.

Entering the Lunar New Year and this Lenten season, I choose to walk out this incredibly potent period of confluence with mindfulness and making deliberate choices. This is not the typical fast for me where I hardline what I can and will not have, but rather, it will be one of allowances and finesse.

How?

Well, I am choosing to practice artful eating by opting for real foods that have not been touched by man’s “food” conveniences. Yes. I will get to see how deeply reliant I am on commercialized, processed, and pre-packaged foods and examine the effects of the food industry’s agenda upon mine.

Do you know just how powerful the 1 trillion dollar food industry may be in its impact on you and your wellness? Well, I will have you ponder upon the startling statistic that the effects of our food choices have resulted 1.4 trillion dollars spent on health issues caused by the foods we eat. Consider who is truly ruling your eating choices–you or a monstrous power parading about through low-fat, tastier, addictive, sugar/preservative/toxic-laden consumables? Does most of what is on the average grocery shelf really classify “food” nowadays?

Before I get myself too worked up… I am simply saying I am planning to consciously fight the numbing ease of commercialized, convenient consumables by weighing such costs and get myself into a better practice by opting for recognizably real food…food closer to the earth from which it was grown. There are so many larger forces at play and I refuse to be bullied about by them… as much as I am able to make a difference in at least my life (and hopefully my husband’s and dog’s.) It may not be easy, but I will be made more aware and freed by the effort itself.

In case you want to join me… these are my guidelines:
1- prefer plant-based meals–organic and local whenever possible
2- food should be recognizable from the source it is from… (that means most breads are off the table, unless they with sprouted grains, with no sugars added, and full of fiber. Raw breads would be ideal.) Deep fried foods are not worth choosing to eat. Re-think fast food! Go for an apple, instead of a snack bar.
3- no additives or sweeteners unless from whole food source like dates (stevia if already in a vegan protein, for example, is permissible.) Sea Salt in moderation is good.
4- when eating animal flesh, or any animal-sourced food (yogurt, eggs, milk) inquire into and eat only organic, free-range, sustainably wild-caught options. Did you know vegans “save” 100 animals each year?
5- if eating out, always ask for organic options in produce and protein choices…and even ask about making the dishes without added sugars and especially the neurotoxin MSG. Prefer olive oil & vinegar as a dressing.
6- only use canned legumes and soup stocks if BPA-free, but prefer bulk bin shopping
7- explore the gorgeous array of edibles offered through creation and remember that the better I acknowledge and appreciate all living creatures, I will be that much more deeply nourished and part of more mindfully stewarding all life sharing this planet.
8- always read the labels and learn the other names of additives, sweeteners, preservatives…
9- stay grateful that I can make such choices.

Why this type of fast? … mostly for the practice of walking my faith step by step acknowledging the wisdom of my Creator in the most simple act of eating intelligently…consuming spiritual, soulful, and physical sustenance in a way most responsibly, expecting to be a blessing and be blessed along the way. Liberation comes from discipline and how wonderful it shall be to walk out this freeing season in newness!

Join me if you would like… and share your journey with me.

“Beloved, I wish above all things that thou mayest prosper and be in health, even as thy soul prospereth.”
-3 John 1:2 KJV

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Freebie!!! Giving away ROCKY THE RESCUE!

Go to this link and sign up for the drawing…!  

https://www.goodreads.com/giveaway/show/123894-rocky-the-rescue

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Spread some goodness around this month by raising awareness about the value of all living creatures and how best to make them truly part of our families, fill one another’s hearts, and make a safe and beautiful home together.

Rocky has changed my life… perhaps he can brighten your day or uplift someone you love?  Spread the word and sign up for the freebie … giving away the book only, of course! The one and only ROCKY–furry love of mine is in my home and heart to stay!

You can also order through the amazon link, too : http://www.amazon.com/Rocky-Rescue-Collection-His-Tales/dp/0986021210/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1421896145&sr=1-1&keywords=rocky+the+rescue

DSC_1540rockymomAs Rocky and I love to live and share … keep our motto in mind!
…GIVE THANKS – GET HAPPY!

ROCKY THE RESCUE is published by http://www.abelievingcompany.com .

Dog food for people?! :)

If you have a furry companion like my Rocky Bear Smith that you love so much, it’s hard to not to share what you are eating…
Oh, that deadlocked, deep-souled stare that guilts you into giving up (sometimes too much) human food to their endearingly pleading gaze. Well, I wanted to start coming up with a solutions…
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Here’s one! A gluten free crumbley cereal “bark” that is satisfying enough for me and my doggie!

Have you seen the ingredients on most doggie cookies and treats! Mystify and gag me! yuck! But this way, I can enjoy a great at home, ingredient-controlled treat WITH my furry love.

INGREDIENTS:
1 3/4 cups soaked buckwheat groats (*make sure they are not drowning in water, just moderately wet… rinse after soaking an hour until water runs relatively clear.)
1 cup of your fav. raw nut butter (I used almond, but I get Rocky would have loved peanut! Cashew may be dreamy!)
1 Tblspoon of vanilla paste
1/8 cup of coconut sugar
2 packets of stevia
(option… you can use honey instead of stevia if you are concerned about your doggie’s digestive system and you are okay with honey’s higher glycemic index)…but that is why I love cinnamon in abundance to help offset some sugar spikes.
3 Tblspoons or Ceylon cinnamon (more if you want!)
2 teaspoon of Himalayan pink salt
I sliced dried figs (since I love them and so does Rocky. Peanut butter with dried banana bits would be delish!)
(try adding hemp seeds for more health value and protein power!)
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DIRECTIONS:
1- Put all ingredients except dried fruit into food processor…mixed until moderately pulverized… you still want some whole groats throughout and not just a mushy paste
2- Pour onto you dehydrator’s teflex sheet. if you want to “score” it for uniform breaking later, you can do so with a knife or pizza cutter a few hours into the dehyrating.
3-Dehydrate for 10 hours at 118 or so (set your machine to about 125 since enough heat dissipates and won’t reach that degree.
4- Flip onto your other teflex sheet and dehydrate some more… another 8 hours or so. Or until it’s irresistably crunchy!!! I love and hate when my dehydrator is going because I love sampling, sampling, sampling under my guise of testing… haha!
5- Remove and let cool and break into pieces or follow your scoring.

Here’s the compromise. This recipe may not be sweet enough for the average American palate, but plenty sweet enough to satisfy your doggie safely. So, you can eat this with more dried fruit when having as a cereal or topped with a banana or other sweetener of choice. Or, just train yourself to enjoy the simple tastes of simple ingredients and break the standard sugar craving needs built upon a food industry that has put sugar in virtually every food under various names. (Don’t get me started). Plus, your doggie companion would probably enjoy being able to share more of what you eat without harm…and can do so if our human food choices were more basic and deliciously healthy! Go ahead… share a bowl of this cereal (even with milk of choice)… one big bowl for you; one appropriately sized bowl for Rocky.
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I am so happy he loved it… and ate it all up! Proof that humans and dogs can really be besties and share more!
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GUILT FREE, GLUTEN-FREE LIVING WITH OUR FURRIEST FRIENDS!!!

And here’s some information on why you should incorporate buckwheat groats into your routine!!!…and it’s not a wheat!!!

It’s a fruit seed that’s related to rhubarb and sorrel, so it’s gluten-free, making it a popular substitute for other wheat-based grains. Though it is usually thought of as a grain, buckwheat is actually the seed of a broadleaf plant related to rhubarb. While it is not a true grain, it is used like one in cooking, and it surpasses rice, wheat and corn on almost every measure of healthfulness (including the fact that rice, wheat, and corn are high on the glycemic scale, thus provoking a quick spike in blood sugar levels, a proven promoter of systemic inflammation). Buckwheat, on the other hand, ranks low on the glycemic scale.

The fruit seed originated in China and spread to Europe and Russia, where it’s often eaten as porridge. However, buckwheat has found a home in the West Virginia region, where it’s been celebrated for years at an annual buckwheat festival.

Buckwheat is also high in manganese, magnesium, copper, and zinc, which are great for the immune system. It also contains all eight essential amino acids, including lysine, which plays a key role in collagen production and is not produced by the human body. Ramirez says people prone to cold sores should try eating buckwheat, since lysine helps wear them off.

How to select: Buckwheat comes in various forms, so it helps to know what you want to use it for before heading to the grocery store. For raw buckwheat, or buckwheat groats, head to the bulk bins area of the store. You can also find groats packaged.

For baking, buckwheat flour is packaged and readily available at most stores. There are also buckwheat noodles, also known as soba noodles, which can be found in the gluten-free section of grocery stores.

Buckwheat Protein’s Unique Health-Promoting Properties:
=The specific characteristics of buckwheat proteins, and the relative proportions of its amino acids, make buckwheat the unsurpassed cholesterol-lowering food studied to date.
=Its protein characteristics also enhance buckwheat’s ability to reduce and stabilize blood sugar levels following meals—a key factor in preventing diabetes and obesity.
=Like the widely prescribed “ACE” hypertension drugs, buckwheat proteins reduce the activity of angiotensin converting enzyme (ACE), thereby reducing hypertension.

Read more: http://www.oprah.com/health/Buckwheat-Dr-Perricones-No-5-Superfood#ixzz2uU8lGeXS

ROCKY THE RESCUE KEEPS ON…

A wonderful photographer George DeLoache shot Rocky today as part of his gallery collection to raise awareness about the beauty and value of rescued animals.
Check out his website…
http://www.georgedeloache.com/

our first family portrait

our first family portrait



This is a wonderful, WONDERFUL way to show your love for family, rescued animals, their rescuers/volunteers, and work with a talented and kind soul–Thank you George DeLoache~

We had a super time standing together for the cause and as a family! Fun screen shots, right?!
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standing together as family

standing together as family


You can visit Rocky’s sites and like him on Facebook here:
WWW.ROCKYTHERESCUE.COM

..and as always, this is part of our family’s ongoing efforts to support http://www.dogswithoutborders.org for their tireless work to save little furry blessings like Rocky who made our filled our home with love. Rocky’s book give 90% of every book sold to this agency.

ROCKY’s own WORDS

WOOOF~
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Scared ya, huh? I can get my hair/fur to stand on end… hoped I could get yours to do the same!!! My mom almost named me Rascal because I can be one…
Why I am writing? …because I want you to check out my online world of woofing around…
Please go to my own page to find out more about my book and what I am doing!
http://www.ROCKYTHERESCUE.com
…and link to my Facebook page from the homepage and check out more about what I do and what is going on with my book!
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… now time to PLAY…!